- Paperback: 208 pages
- Publisher: Canongate Books; Main edition (14 Feb. 2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1841956139
- ISBN-13: 978-1841956138
- Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 1.3 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 516,513 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Don't Tell Me The Truth About Love Paperback – 14 Feb 2005
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With this new collection of short stories, Dan Rhodes keeps as his subject the intricacies and deficiencies of desire, but his methods have changed. At some junctures he appears to be aiming for the mythopoetic tone and ominous symbolism of fairy tale--more than one of these pieces, for instance, is set in a dark, foreboding, Hansel-and-Gretel type forest. An example is the story "Painting", where an artist creates a portrait of a lady so beautiful it slays with love all who see it (uncannily like Monty Python's "funniest joke in the world", which kills with laughter all who hear it). Other stories come across as mainstream, but turn out equally pixilated: "Violoncello" evolves from a family saga in modern Vietnam to a weird fable about a boy becoming a musical instrument; "Landfill" has a prosaic face but the undertone is magical realist. Yet one of the very best stories, "The Carolingian Period", is set squarely in a very real world: academia. It tells the melancholy story of an old architecture professor in too much of a hurry, and it shows quite how moving Rhodes can be especially when he isn't turning post-modern literary tricks.
Rhodes's first collection, Anthropology, was a quiver of literary arrows: an ensemble of pointed pithy and often very poignant short stories focusing principally on the anguish and lunacy of love. As such it won much praise and attention, despite, or because of, its peculiarities of style. Don't Tell Me The Truth About Love is no less intriguing. --Sean Thomas --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
By the time you find the story you most relate to, you won't be sorry to be alone after all. (The Sun)
...bittersweet yet absurdly magical stories that will pull at your heart strings. By forcing the hitherto unobservable, he shows us an unknown world.
... it's frequently hilarious, and certainly memorable.
...the story turns into a moving dissertation upon the nature and profundity of romantic love, and the all but unbearable effect of its loss......Not until the end do you realise just how good this book is, haunting you long after it has been put down.
"For all the picturebook simplicity of Rhodes' storytelling his characters are rarely less than credible, and the emotion genuine.(The Times) See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
There are seven stories in the collection all with one main theme, they all have a wonderful sense of magic, be they set in forests like `Glass Eyes' or in the modern world as `The Violoncello'. We have tales of unrequited love between old men and young beauties, old hags who magically entice young lovers, men willing to literally become instruments for women to play with, women so obsessed their lovers don't love them they will see how far they can test that love. As you can probably tell, love appears in many forms, always quite darkly and generally with a twist.
I will admit the first story `The Carolingian Period' worried me that I might be a little disappointed, it didn't do quite enough as a tale or effect me like I wanted it to, I also predicted the ending a little. That said it was still a great story, just having read Dan's other works I wanted more. `The Violoncello' changed all that. I admit I was thinking `if these are fairy stories why are we in modern Asia not the wooded lands' but the magical element kicked in and, if there is such a thing, it became an epic short story.Read more ›
Try it. It is as much of a masterpiece as a Stradivarius and will reawaken your desire for being in love.
She accepted this beautifully crafted collection of medium-sized stories. That's another thing about Dan's original style. He has very short, short, medium-sized, normal and long stories. He even has homemade published books now with his latest offering, The Prof...
Anyway, Don't Tell Me... has, as I understand, found it's place in her toilet for some good old fashioned solitary reading time!
Like the other Dan Rhodes books I have read and loved (The Little White Car and Come Home Timoleon Vieta) this one did not disappoint. Extremely funny in places, tender and always unpredictable these stories were a joy to read!
I particularly loved Landfill and Beautiful Consuela for their innovative quality, the latter bearing a highly pertinent sentiment for our image-obsessed society.
I enjoyed the recurring themes of music and musical instruments and, of course, the unstoppable force of love.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Dan Rhodes can do no wrong. I am unable to write a balanced review but I guess all Dan's work is like that so I will now copy and paste this into all the other Dan Rhodes' books I... Read morePublished 11 months ago by CLIVE S G FENN
Typical slightly twisted short stories from this author - possibly not recommended as the first book to read by Dan Rhodes but one to read after some others of his are read first.Published on 22 May 2014 by Nick
A great writer. This book is a satisfying selection of stories about how love can take unexpected turns. I'd highly recommend both this writer and this specific book.Published on 13 Feb. 2014 by Terri
Beautifully written stories of one sided love. With the usual Dan Rhodes quirk thrown in. I definitely recommend this book.Published on 4 Nov. 2013 by c c p smith
Dan Rhodes is probably a bit like Marmite, a kind of love or hate affair.
His stories are often a little twisted, often sad, sometimes silly, but usually in a strange way... Read more
Unlike his wonderful novel, Timoleon Vieta Come Home, Rhodes's plain, stripped-down, almost disaffected style of writing adds little to the benefit of his subject in these stories. Read morePublished on 21 Sept. 2009 by Eileen Shaw